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March 2, 2012

Mesirow's Clearing Division Has a New Owner

By Staff Reports

RBC Correspondent Services was in the process of buying the clearing division of Mesirow Financial, RBC officials confirmed as CQ&D was going to press.

"We're preparing to announce the purchase," Craig Gordon, director of RBC Correspondent Services, told CQ&D. He added that the deal, which includes an undisclosed amount of cash, should close sometime in March.

Criag Gordon

Mesirow will continue its brokerage operations. It now has some 50 correspondents. But it found the clearing business didn't fit its strategy, according to Gordon..

So why did RBC, which bought J.P. Morgan's custody and registered investment adviser business a few years ago, make the buy? RBC says it is in an expansion mode.

"For a number of years we have been committed to growing the correspondent clearing, investment advisory and custody business," Gordon said. He added that the Mesirow buy is in keeping with the company's business of adding a certain kind of clearing business.

Gordon said Mesirow's clientele is similar to RBC's.

"Culturally, this is a perfect fit. It (Mesirow) is primarily a retail-focused firm with a small amount of institutional business," Gordon said.

He said RBC has and continues to be seeking firms and clients that cater to more than just transacting.

This means clients who are seeking investment advisory help.

The addition of the Mesirow business will give RBC Correspondent Services some 250 correspondents.


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